Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Hashtags, Conversations, and Building Professional Communities

Stimulating conversation is often a springboard for innovative ideas and reflective practice.  After opening a Twitter account a couple of months ago, I am compelled to address my growing appreciation for the hashtag chat feature. 

For those who are unfamiliar with hashtags, they are simply a means to unite Tweets concerning a particular topic.  For a more detailed explanation, I found The Ultimate Guide to Twitter Hashtags a good resource.

Some of my favorite aspects of hashtag chats include:

  1. The conversation does not necessarily need to end.
  2. You can search for the hashtag at any time and engage in a conversation.
  3. These chats are often a good way to find other people whom you may be interested in following.

For educators and educational leaders, I have started the #edleaders hashtag.  One of my goals this year is to structure more formal #edleaders chat sessions (which will be announced via Twitter @DrTroyRoddy and posted in the margin of The Art of Education).  For those who are looking for additional education chats, I would recommend a few of my favorites:

  • #edchat
  • #edtech
  • #cpchat
  • #leadershipchat

If you are already Tweeting, check these out.  If you do not currently have a Twitter account and are looking for stimulating professional conversations, I would recommend that you consider trying it.

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